Tuesday, December 22, 2015

2015 LR4 Without Running Boards

Several visitors to my blog have enjoyed reading about how I removed the running boards from my 2015 Land Rover LR4.  One such reader has asked about the vehicle's appearance with the running boards removed - prior to installing any rock sliders.  Luckily, I have a few photos to help illustrate that case.

I had mentioned in my earlier post that when the rocker panel trim is reinstalled (snapped back into place), the body panel is slightly visible where the trim has factory cutouts for the running board mounts.  This leaves a small sliver of body panel visible, mostly when you are viewing from a low position (crouched), or from a greater distance.  That sliver is more visible if the body panel paint contrasts with the black trim.  This is the case with my red car.  I don't think this would be noticeable to anybody except the most observant LR4 fan.

The photo above shows those trim cutouts, as seen from below after removing the running boards.  Those odd heat sinks are more visible than the exposed body panel sections. 

Here's a closeup of that last image, with a better view of that sliver of red body panel.  

Those sections of body panel appeared to have the same exterior finish and treatment as the other body panels, so I am guessing that they are equally fine with exposure to road grime, etc.  When viewed up close the body panels aren't visible, as this quarter view shows.

I don't have any photos with the doors open.

The heat sinks are not visible with running boards or rock sliders installed.  UPDATE: Apparently the aluminum parts that I've been calling heat sinks are not heat sinks, and are meant to function as crumple devices in conjunction with the OEM running boards.  This is the group wisdom from LR forum users, who also indicate that these can be removed after removing the running boards (aka side steps).  They do appear designed to carry loads from the running boards to the frame.  Since I failed to remove them, maybe they'll work similarly for my sliders.


Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for taking the time to post this! I was not aware of the exposure of those heat sinks. Looks like they would be visible regardless if the factory cut trim was replaced with a non cut pc (i.e. MY2014 version). Would you agree?

Michael said...

I think you're right. Any other factory trim is likely to fit the same and won't stick down far enough to entirely block the view of the heat sinks. But if give the choice of running boards or sometimes seeing the heat sinks, I'd still not have the running boards. If it starts to bother you, then you can always add rock sliders. The ones I installed aren't the most rugged, but they were pretty easy to install.

Anonymous said...

This has been invaluable to me as you've addressed all my concerns so a big thank you!
I plan on sliders eventually just do not want the nerf bar/extensions as im trying to keep the adds as stealth as possible. I like the ones from Sierra Expeditions (http://www.sierraexpeditions.com/index.php?l=product_detail&p=2212) as they look squared off and fit as though there looks simply to be a lower trim....Just not sure of the fit on the 2016 and they cannot provide any assurances.

Anonymous said...


Just as an interesting aside i learned from the Land Rover World site that those parts that look like heat sinks are actually there to work in conjunction with the OEM side steps in the event there is a side impact. These parts are meant to absorb some of the impact (like a crumple zone)....It appears these are typically removed along with the steps.

Michael said...

Thanks! That's good to know. I'll take a closer look at them when it warms up and see if I might remove them.

Anonymous said...

Great info here. Great in depth write up. Worked perfectly. Thank you Michael.
I opted to go with the Voyager sliders rather than the ARB/Sierra sliders.
They were $100 less and I prefer the look/design. Plus they were in stock.

Peter Alsante said...

Thanks Michael. Did you end up using those aluminum pieces (you were original referring to as heat sinks) with the sliders? I had my running boards removed by the dealer but they left ob the auminum pieces and I’m considering removing. Thanks man!

Michael said...

Peter: Yes, I left them on. They will provide useful structural protection in the event of a side collision. That might even be their original purpose, providing extra strength of the running boards were hit in a side collision. Plus, I was lazy.